Screen and Film School Manchester Fabian Wagner Scholarship winner announced

7 September, 2021

Screen and Film School Manchester are delighted to announce the winner of this year’s Fabian Wagner Scholarship, Muhammed Bittaye.

The life changing £30,000 scholarship will cover the 3-year undergraduate degree tuition fees for Muhammed, as well as providing the opportunity to be mentored by Manchester’s dedicated PatronFabianThe list of applications was long and full of talented young students. Settling on a winner was extremely difficult, and Fabian took the final decision seriously. Ultimately, the experienced cinematographer saw something in Muhammed that sealed the deal.

Here’s what our Patron had to say about the nature of this new scholarship:

“Supporting young filmmakers and aspiring cinematographers has long been a passion of mine, so I’m delighted to be giving this opportunity to another fantastic talent in Muhammed Bittaye. I’m looking forward to seeing how he develops and supporting him in whatever way I can in the years to come.I will be there to support Muhammed every step of the way, as will everyone at Screen and Film School Manchester. My advice to Muhammed as he prepares to begin his studies would be to take everything that he possibly can from the three years with us.

Muhammed Bittaye

Muhammed is originally from The Gambia, and along with his mother and little brother moved to the UK seven years ago and applied for asylum on their arrival. A particularly inspiring story which chimed loudly with Fabian and our College Principal David Thompson. The family now live in nearby Bury and Mohammed studied at Bury College. Although he was almost lost for words when he found out that Fabian had chosen him as our inaugural scholarship winner, we did manage to catch up with him in the middle of all the excitement and this is what he had to say about the news: 

“Firstly, a huge thanks to Fabian for giving me this opportunity, I am very happy and grateful, and this motivates me to work hard so I can hopefully be able to do the same thing for someone else in the future. I still haven’t had a chance to tell my mum, as she’s at work today! I have been in shock all day since finding out. I’ll tell everyone later today and we’ll celebrate. I’m going to make the most of this opportunity.”

Fabian, who is best known for his work on Game of Thrones, The Crown, Sherlock and most recently Zack Synder’s Justice League, was announced as our first Screen and Film School Manchester Patron back in May. He will support the shortlisted scholarship applicants, as well as our winner, as their filmmaking journeys begin.

College Principal David Thompson was keen to reiterate this when discussing the decision process and what the future may hold for all our new students: 

“Fabian has not taken his Patron role with us lightly, and it’s so exciting for our students to have him reviewing their applications. Whilst looking over the applications myself, it was fantastic to learn even more about our students, seeing and reading what is important to them, what drives them and what they are passionate about. It was a true honour. 

We had many applicants, and it was a privilege to be part of this process. Seeing students work, getting to know them even better means we’re even more excited about getting started in just a few weeks’ time. 

Fabian was incredibly giving with his time and agonised over his decision. He’s keen to support the other short-listed candidates wherever he can over the coming years. These are very exciting times indeed for our Manchester students.” 

David and Fabian are looking forward to mentoring Muhammed and closely following his progress, just as they are with all our new students as they prepare to start their student lives with us soon.

It’s not long now until the all-important Fresher’s week starts in Manchester (September 20th), closely followed by our very first week of teaching at Riverside Studios. We can’t wait to meet you there!



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